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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Brighter Choice Charter Middle School for Girls – Financial Operations (2014M-301)


Released: March 6, 2015 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to evaluate the effectiveness of the School’s contract with a not-for-profit foundation for the period July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2014.

Background

The Brighter Choice Charter Middle School for Girls is a public school that is not under the control of the local school board in the city of Albany, Albany County. The School’s current charter was issued in November 2009, and oversight of operations is provided by a five-member Board of Trustees. Operating expenditures for the 2013-14 fiscal year totaled approximately $3.2 million.

Key Findings

  • The Board contracted with a Foundation to provide services to the School, but the contract is not sufficiently detailed.
  • The Board President was the Executive Director of the Foundation but did not disclose this information on the financial disclosure forms with the Charter Schools Institute.

Key Recommendations

  • Determine what services will be contracted out and which of those services will be acquired from the Foundation, and ensure that contracts include a sufficient description of the benefits, rights and responsibilities of all parties to the contracts.
  • Ensure that Board members disclose their interests in School contracts in writing.

Local Government and School Accountability Contact Information:

Phone: (518) 474-4037; Email: localgov@osc.state.ny.us
Address: Office of the State Comptroller, Division of Local Government and School Accountability
110 State Street, 12th Floor; Albany, NY 12236